Kim Yongguk (or Longguo) has made his highly anticipated solo debut with the smooth single Clover.
The former Produce 101 contestant and JBJ member collaborated with legendary rapper Yoon Mirae for the single – released 13 June, 2018. He goes back to basics with this super chill, super laid back R&B single.
Yoon Mirae grants the rap element. Her first verse is entirely in English, and it feels too hasty. But her second verse, in Korean, is stand-out. The rough-edged tone of her voice provides an easy, light contrast to Yongguk’s vocal. And we see much more of her flow and skill in this second verse.
Clover is undeniable a vocal-led single. There’s barely a moment that’s not filled with Yongguk’s unruffled, smooth vocals. It contains many elements that have already proved to be popular in KPOP. And it’s a song that lends itself well to being listened to over and over again!
Yongguk’s music video for Clover is a series of images. There’s no narrative story or even a linear sequence. Instead, there are a series of aesthetic shots overlaid with pastel colours over dark, brooding backlights.
In a sense, it’s a reminder of the quirky-chic music videos we saw an abundance of back in 2015 (think Giriboy aesthetics darkened to JBJ Fantasy’s colour palette). The transitions between scenes could be more polished so that the music video doesn’t feel as rushed.
But, the saving grace for Clover comes in the form of the CGI that is employed in each scene. Each scene deserved more time, a few more seconds each to be fully appreciated. Because it’s super appealing to see how seamlessly the computer-generated graphics blend with the physical scenery.
Clover is a song that fits in well in summer playlists and radio plays. The music video reflects the calm, elegant tone of the song. It works really well together. It’s not radically different, but it’s a really solid song.